EVERY year, September 5 officially marks the beginning of the National Teachers’ Month, and October 5 concludes it with the celebration of the World Teachers’ Day.
This yearly commemoration is pursuant to Presidential Proclamation No. 242 entitled “Declaring the Period of September 5 to October 5 of Every Year as National Teachers’ Month,” as well as Republic Act No. 10743 entitled An Act Declaring the Fifth Day of October of Every Year as the National Teachers’ Day.
It is but truly fitting to honor the teaching profession and recognize teachers for their loyal service and dedicated commitment in developing young minds and hearts. This is the perfect opportunity to express our gratitude for the many positive influences of our teachers on us and our learners at present. This year’s theme “Gurong Pilipino: Turo Mo, Kinabukasan Ko” clearly depicts the indispensable role teachers play in our lives.
Other than the great influence of our family and even friends, our teachers, who in one way or another have touched and inspired our lives, also relatively shape what we have become now. In fact, more than how I value the impact my teachers have caused in me (good and bad included), I deeply treasure all the work and patience the teachers are now extending to my children. Now that I am a parent myself, I realized how greatly important these so-called “second parents” are in the lives of our kids.
As a working mom, I may have initially taught my children how to count, read, and write, but their teachers are the ones who selflessly and patiently gave their time and effort in making sure they do it right. I may have packed their food for school and prepared their uniforms before I go to work, but they are the ones who explain and impart new things and ideas to my children.
I may have educated my kids on how to behave properly, but they are the ones responsible for my kids’ behavior while in school and raise them according to what is morally acceptable and fair. Indeed, teachers are the partners of parents like me, and we really have to work hand in hand to ensure that a child is given the right amount of guidance and motivation to become the best that they can be.
However, parents should acknowledge the fact that teachers can only do so much. While there a handful of teachers who really go out of their way to provide the necessary interventions for children especially those experiencing difficulties, teachers have their own children and families to give their attention to. While the author of this famous quote “A good teacher is like a candle that consumes itself while lighting the way for others” still cannot be appropriately traced now, I would like to emphasize how great the sacrifices our teachers make to fulfill their tasks.
As of September, four public school teachers who committed suicide allegedly due of the voluminous loads of paper works they are required to accomplish. As a former teacher myself, I cannot feel more emphatic to their plight. The plain task of facilitating teaching and learning inside the classroom is already a challenge in itself. I used to say that teachers are also like actors because we have to hide our problems, our pain, even our illnesses when we face our students. When we start our day and teach in front of them, we have to be at our best-all the time.
Our job does not end with the classroom discussion. We have to check test papers, record and compute grades, prepare lesson plans and instructional materials, and update ourselves with the current methods on how to discuss a particular lesson or topic. We also have to teach our students in their dance performances and make their props for their presentations. We also conduct counseling and guidance sessions for those we feel need them the most. We may have rest days, but these are usually devoted to finishing all these paper works, that at times, time for our family and ourselves is sacrificed.
On this year’s celebration of the National Teachers’ Month, the least we can do for teachers is to show our appreciation for all their hard work. While the road to lessening their duties and responsibilities may seem a bit far from where we are now, our gratitude when shown to them will be a simple way on how we can ease their burdens as teachers.
Happy Teachers’ Month to all my former teachers in UAGS, UAHS and UPD. Also, I would like to take this opportunity to extend my sincerest thanks to the following teachers of Marco, T’ Jennybee, T’ Kate, T’ Raishiel, T’ Elma, T’ Arlyn, and all the Grade 2 teachers in DSMI; and to the teachers of Lance, T’ Karen of SMLC and T’Ann and T’Nema of BTLC. To all of you, here’s my way of thanking you for everything!